29 July :The development plans of Chennai Airport got the clearance of the Public Investment Board (PIB) today. It will now have to be approved by the Government (CCEA approval). The work is expected to begin by September 2008.
It may be recalled that in April, 2007, the Government decided that the Chennai Airport would be developed to international standards by the Airports Authority of India (AAI). The AAI has developed a master plan and design of terminals through Global Architectural Design Competition. An Inter-Ministerial Group (IMG) has approved the development plans. The plans focus on the enhancement of runway capacity, apron capacity and terminal building capacity.
The State Government has handed over about 130 acres of land to the AAI for the development of the secondary runway. Land has also been made available by the Defence Authorities. A meeting chaired by the Defence Minister was held on 24 July, 2008, where it was decided to hand over 21 acres of Defence land to the AAI for the expansion of the airport. The Expert Committee on Infrastructural development is expected to give the environmental clearance of the project very soon.
The existing International Terminal at the Chennai Airport has a capacity of 3 million passengers and existing Domestic Terminal has a capacity of 6 million passengers. Additional capacity of 4 million is being added to the International Terminal to enhance its capacity to 7 million passengers. A new Domestic Terminal is being built with capacity of 10 million in addition to the existing Domestic Terminal, to augment the capacity of the Domestic Terminal to 16 million. The construction and development work is expected to be completed by October 2010. The total cost of the project is envisaged to be Rs.1808.10 crores of which approximately Rs.1077.16 crores will be required for the new Domestic Terminal building and for the modernization/extension of the International Terminal and the Face Lifting of the existing International and Domestic Terminals. 80% of the project will be funded through internal resources of the AAI and 20% through commercial borrowings. No User Development Fee (UDF) or budgetary support is envisaged for this project.
The upgraded International Terminal building, which will be able cater to 7 million passengers a year, will have a peak hour capacity of about 4450 passengers, 109 check in counters, 35 immigration counters for departure and 39 for arrival, 8 customs counters for departure and 26 for arrival, 8 conveyor belts and 8 aerobridges. This Terminal is expected to be saturated in 2017-18. The Domestic Passenger Terminals which will be able to cater to 16 million passengers annually will have a peak hour capacity of about 5360 passengers, 99 check in counters, 10 conveyor belts, 9 aerobridges and is expected to be saturated by 2012-13.
The Pre-Engineering and Pre-Qualification of the project have been completed. As per present estimates, work is expected to commence in September, 2008. Construction of Runway, Taxiway, Parking Bays is expected to be completed in 20 months and the Terminal Buildings in 26 months. Thus, the Runway, Taxiway, Parking Bays scheduled to be completed by April, 2010 and the Terminal Buildings by October, 2010.